Bp SMS & the Best Health App – More Than An Appointment Reminder Service!

appointment reminder software article blog image

Bp Comms is the umbrella brand for our Bp SMS service and the Best Health App. Practices can use one or the other, or both at the same time.

Anyone who has worked in a medical practice will appreciate how important an appointment reminder service is in day-to-day operations. However, many people don’t consider the wider benefits of a robust patient communication solution beyond reminding patients of upcoming appointments.

Bp Comms is a practice-patient communication solution that offers much more in the way of functionality than just being appointment reminder software (though that is one of its features!)

We’ve put together a list of ways that you can get Bp Comms working for you outside of sending appointment reminders. Many of these are easy to setup, and in the long run will save you time and money! One added benefit of using Bp Comms is automatic Contact Note generation. This records all Bp Comms messages and contact points, keeping your communication record concise, centralised and easy to review at any time.

Make the Most of Your Appointment Book

Appointments Running Late?

We all know things happen and appointments can end up running late. You can save your team from having to make time consuming phone calls by sending single SMS messages or bulk SMS messages to book patients.

Other benefits of this functionality include:

  • Improving the patient experience by reducing their wait times, while still reassuring patients they will be seen
  • Controlling the number of patients in your waiting room. By using the SMS feature, you can ask your patients to arrive later for their appointment, or to kindly wait outside until they’re called in.

Oh No, a Doctor Has Gone Home Sick!

It happens. Just like anyone else, sometimes doctors need to leave unexpectedly due to illness or emergencies.

You can inform your patients ahead of time by sending an individual message, or a bulk message to all patients booked for that day. This gives patients the ability to reschedule their appointments, or organise to see another doctor who is available.

Come Back - We Need To See You!

You can support your practice’s recall and reminder process with Bp Comms. Send SMS messages to patients to inform them that their results are in and they need to make a follow-up appointment. This functionality is what most people think of when they hear ‘appointment reminder service’!

These SMS messages can be sent by the doctor directly from the Provider Inbox or by the team from the Follow-Up Inbox. This gives you the flexibility to adjust the workflow to suit your practice needs!

This functionality benefits your team in several ways:

  • Free up your receptionists and nurses by minimising the number of phone calls they need to make
  • Prompt your patients to call you to make an appointment
  • Record a Contact note for each contact attempt

Keeping In Touch

Keeping in touch with your patients is essential for your business. The Search Utility in Bp Premier can be the ultimate tool for sending information and marketing campaigns to your patient base.

Before we continue, it is important to note that you must have the patient’s express consent to receive Health Awareness messages.

Customer Experience Feedback

Want to know how your team are meeting the needs of your patients, or would you like feedback about a service you’re providing? Did you know that you can create a survey using an online survey creator, and send the URL to patients to complete?

This is where the Search Utility can really make your day by:

  • Allowing you to search for patients by date or day of visit, or by the doctor or nurse they saw
  • Offering functionality to send the SMS in bulk
  • Recording a Contact Note, and
  • Recording the marketing campaign details

And if you’d like to check which marketing campaign went out and when, you can review the survey results. If you’re interested in creating a patient survey, there are a number of excellent online options such as Survey Monkey, Typeform and Survey Planet.

Your Practice Would Like to Promote New Workshops

Here are two examples that might inspire you:

  • You’ve decided to run an information session for patients on the ins-and-outs of ePrescribing and why scripts look different with Active Ingredient Prescribing
  • After speaking with patients, you have found a diabetes education system could help your community.

In both scenarios, you can create a specialised SMS template to send to your patient list in bulk!

Practice Offerings

Sending out proactive health reminders and tips can be a great way of supporting your community. Here are some examples of how our practices use the Search Utility to send out bulk SMS messages:

  • Proactive Health Assessments available for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders
  • Availability of Covid-19 vaccines
  • Baby clinics and parenting groups
  • Offering specialised services such as employment medicals or medico-legal appointments

Notification of Practice Changes

Made a change to your opening hours? Has a new specialist joined your team? Let your patients know!

The Search Utility can make this super easy. Simply create your message template and send via Mail Merge!

Clinical Info - Just a Click Away!

Did you know that you can send SMS messages directly from the clinical record? It can help save your doctors time on the phone, and record the Contact Note straight away.

So with that in mind, what kind of information can you send from the clinical record? Here are a couple of examples that practices tell us they use.

Ad-Hoc Messages

A patient may need a gentle reminder about a change to their medication or dosage. For example, a patient who may have started taking Zoloft needs to gradually increase their dosage over several days. 

Your doctor can send an SMS message on the third day to remind them to increase the dose that day. Doctors can send messages to the patient during the consultation, or even immediately after by accessing the clinical record again.

Health Summaries Via BHA

With patients often seeing multiple doctors or specialists, your team may be asked to provide Health Summaries regularly. Proactive patients may also like having their up-to-date health information available for those ‘just in case’ moments in life.

Practices using the BHA can send Health Summaries in just three clicks. The summary will be sent straight to the patient’s phone and will be available within the App.

Providing Support With Information Leaflets

Has your patient just been diagnosed with a new condition, or starting on a new medication?

Support their health journey by sending education materials via the BHA. Select the View tab and you’ll have access to MIMS Consumer Medicines Information, Patient Education materials, and fact sheets.

For patients enrolled in the BHA, the Send Leaflet option under the Send icon will be available at the top of the window. Additionally, you’ll save on paper printing, and it’ll be recorded in your Contact Notes!

Want to Know More?

Hopefully, these examples have demonstrated how Bp Comms is so much more than just an appointment reminder service. But we’ve only just scratched the surface!

Knowledge Base
Don’t forget that as a Bp Comms user, you’ll receive access to our Knowledge Base, which contains a wealth of articles that are designed to walk you through everything from setting up Bp Comms, creating templates, sending messages, using Contact Notes, and much more!

Vimeo
Our previously recorded Bp Premier & Bp Comms Masterclasses are all available for you to watch on our Vimeo channel. Click on the links below to take a peek!

Bp Comms Training
We have an online training course focused specifically on Bp Comms! During this 3-hour course, our trainers will discuss the importance and implications of patient consent, demonstrate the setup and configuration of Bp Comms including creating and managing templates, along with the complete recall and reminder workflows, including the use of manual Contact Notes. For more information visit the Bp Virtual course page, or contact our Training team at 1300 40 1111 or training@bpsoftware.net.

Authored by:

appointment reminder software blog author image belinda bazant

Belinda Bazant
Training Content Developer at Best Practice Software

Best Health App Survey: Give Your Opinion for a Chance to Win

The Best Health App Survey

Seeking Customer Input Through this Best Health App Survey

A customer centric approach and commitment to continuous evolution, to meet the ever-changing demands of healthcare professionals has proudly been the cornerstone of our operations since 2004. We believe this to be a symbiotic relationship where development of our offerings advances alongside our increasingly tech savvy practices and their patients. As such, we’re seeking your input via this Best Health App survey, to help us shape and prioritise our roadmap for the development of our app.

The short survey will only take 10-15 minutes to complete, and focuses on identifying the functionality that is most important to your Practice and patients.

Prize Draw Details

The prize: Win one of three $100 Visa gift cards.

Contest Period: The survey is open from 7:00 am Wednesday 21st April and closes at 11:59pm Monday 10th of May. 

Eligibility: To be included in the prize draw respondents must complete the Best Health App survey online. Only Team Bp customers are eligible. Australian and New Zealand customer feedback welcome.

Date, time and place of draw: The prize draw will be conducted at midday Friday 14th May. Winners will be drawn at random.

Publication of winner names: Winners will be notified by telephone or in writing via email. Please provide your contact details at the end of the survey to be included in the draw.

Improving Patient Communication During Unprecedented and Unusually Busy Times

For those practices who are currently enrolled and using the Best Health App, sending notifications via the App may help to reach some of your most vulnerable patients and, subsequently, the patient reach may be improved.  This may help to reduce the need for more direct methods of communication such as phone calls, SMS and emails.

The three communication options available through the BHA include Practice Notices, Health Awareness messages and Individual messaging. Before we jump into using these three communication options, let’s quickly review the messaging types available in Bp Comms.

Message Type Consent Type

Appointments

A patient is allowing the practice to send messages about their booked appointments, either as needed or on an automated schedule.

Can be sent individually or in bulk.

Implied consent.

Where communications form part of the doctor-patient relationship

Where communications are in accordance with a clinical duty of care

Clinical Reminders

A patient is allowing the practice to send messages to them about attending appointments for health care of a preventative nature, such as reminders set for care plans, immunisations etc.

Can only be sent in bulk.

Clinical Communication

A patient is allowing communications to be sent to them about their investigation results, medication compliance, or other important information of a clinical nature.

Can be sent individually or in bulk.


Health Awareness


Health Summaries

A patient is allowing communications to be sent to them about a health issue that may be relevant to them, or important information about the services your practice provides.

Can only be sent in bulk.

Using the App you can send patients

  • Health Summaries
  • Patient Education Materials (Factsheets)
  • NPS and CMI Leaflets

Express consent.

Where consent cannot be implied for the communications.

Consent must be given explicitly, either verbally or in writing.

Practice Notices

The first option is using the Practice Notices function within Bp Comms configuration.  This can be sent to all patients enrolled in the Best Health App and may help to communicate information on a whole clinic basis such as new isolation procedures or trading hours.

Best Health App

Health Awareness Messages

The second option is sending messages to a group of patients via Health Awareness messaging.

You have the ability to message your vulnerable patients in groups such as patients with chronic illnesses, patients over 70 years of age or those with newborn babies.

Examples of the messages clinics might send;

  • Instructions on visiting your clinic – identifying isolation areas or separate entrances
  • Informing patients they may be eligible for telehealth or telephone consults,
  • Providing useful hygiene and health tips specific for their chronic illness
  • Send a patient Health Summary which can include their prescription information

Please note – your patients must expressly consent to Health Awareness messaging to receive these messages.

Sending a Health Awareness message works in three parts;

  • Part 1 – Set up your templates within the Bp Comms configuration
  • Part 2 – Run a search in your database. Filter patient list using age, conditions or medications
  • Part 3 – Run a mail merge to generate the communication to bulk group of patients

Remember that Best Health App messages are not limited by characters, therefore, you will only be charged one credit per message sent regardless of its length.

Individual Messaging

Don’t forget practices have the ability to send app messages directly to individual patients as normal via the Appointment Book.

     Where to find more information

For more information and instructions on how to utilise the Best Health App messaging options please click on the Vimeo link below.

Bp Premier JADE SP1 Masterclass – Patient Communication using Bp Comms.

Alternatively, access the Knowledgebase directly via Best Practice under the Help > Online > Search for Best Health App.

Resources

Click on the links below to access our PDF guide to give you all the information you need for using Bp Comms and the Best Health App.

A full guide to getting started with the Best Health App is also available on our Knowledge Base.

Living the App Life – Our Journey Developing the Best Health App

Building the Best Health App has certainly been a journey. It’s progressed from an initial idea to countless workshops, engaging with our customers at the 2017 Bp Summit for feedback on desired features and functionality, a bit of external consulting, creating our own internal app team, starting a multiple stage testing process, and live beta sites, all before the public release.

Our journey started with an idea and vision to bring a patient’s health record right into their own pocket empowering them to take control of their health care journey. So, no matter where a person is travelling, they can always access their clinical information to improve the care that they receive.

This idea quickly gained traction as it also provides a completely new way for Practices and Doctors to engage with their patients and improve their overall relationships. It opens the door to the concept of Patient Experience (PX) and the first consumer facing product for Best Practice Software.

We engaged an external agency, experienced in app design, to ensure our technical design followed the latest industry standards, security models and technologies.

We then put together our own internal team which grew to six dedicated developers as well as additional supporting technical staff. The team works across both the Best Health App and Bp Premier Practice Management System ensuring a seamless integration between the two products. Our subject matter experts (SMEs) and the broader team across the business also played a pivotal role in identifying the product requirements for each feature.

Getting to public release required a highly collaborative approach across all areas of our organisation to ensure that we were ready to give practices the best possible customer experience. Training, sales, marketing, support and legal all had to come together for us to make the public release a reality.

Yeah Nah, Not So Simple…

Things are always more complex than they seem initially, and we have faced many challenges along the way that have required significant effort and collaboration by the team to resolve.

Challenges are opportunities and we welcome them.

One of the ongoing challenges is balancing out the integrated feature work between the Best Health App and Bp Premier. This required cross-team coordination to ensure the two products worked seamlessly together. As an example, we created a Patient Check-In feature in the app, which required substantial integration work to ensure we adhered to the patient identification criteria outlined by the RACGP and meets the standards of patient identification in Australia.

The messaging component between the Best Health App and Bp Premier provided many challenges. We started with a straightforward requirement for doctors to be able to send messages to patients that soon morphed into a complex exception management framework with identified points of failure and defined recovery methods. The result being a streamlined experience driven by preferred communication based on patient preferences. The Best Health App includes many types of messages such as appointment and clinical reminders, patient education material and practice notifications. This solution decreases overall messaging costs and creates savings for practices.

Privacy & Security

Security, privacy and storage of patient’s sensitive data is critical and forms the architectural backbone of the Best Health App.  The team engaged with security experts to solution a framework that met the security and privacy guidelines necessary for this type of patient app. The outcome is a platform that enforces Australian data sovereignty and ensures we are using the latest encryption methods and tools available. As testimony to all this hard work, we received a very high security score for the penetration testing that was conducted by an external party.

In addition, we completely remodelled the Patient Consent process to help manage Patient Privacy, giving patients the choice of communication types, they wish to receive. The Patient Consent process was part of the Bp Premier Indigo SP1 release and received a significant amount of positive feedback from external parties.

Exciting Times Ahead

It has taken us close to three years to get to this point where we are confident that we have the right architectural framework to ensure all bases are covered in respect to Practice and patient confidentiality and the security of all personal and clinical data. We have a solid foundational product that is clinically and technically safe and effective, upon which we can confidently build more features for Practices and patients to meet the growing need in the community to have greater flexibility and control over their time and access to clinical information.

With an ever growing percentage of people accustomed to doing almost everything online at a time that fits in with a hectic lifestyle, having a trusted app that connects patients to their Practices, where they can manage medical appointments, reminders and other clinical information in the one place can provide peace of mind and empower people to take control of their health care journey.

This is an exciting time for everyone involved and we cannot wait to release more features and continue to enhance patient experience for our industry.

Co-authored by:
Henry Vesander
Product Manager
Meg Gugenberger
Product Manager, Best Health App

Best Practice releases Best Health App

A revolution in patient care takes place today with the launch of the Best Health App, Best Practice Software’s new patient app, available free to patients of Practices using Best Practice’s latest Bp Premier software release, Jade Sp1.

Practices will now be able to go above and beyond in respect of the added value services that they can offer to their patients.

According to Dr Frank Pyefinch, Best Practice’s CEO, “This new and exciting app connects Bp Premier Practices with their patients in a way that will help strengthen relationships, engage patients in their health care journey and empower them towards improving their health outcomes”.

The Best Health App enables a direct mobile connection between Patient and Practice. Uniquely, the Best Help App provides the Patient with Health Fact Sheets relevant to their well-being and Health Summaries.

Phase One of the Best Health App also allows the Patient to:

  • View their upcoming appointments
  • Book online appointments if the Practice uses an online appointment vendor
  • Receive and respond to appointment reminders
  • Check-in for their appointments
  • Receive Clinical Reminders and other messages from their Practice

“All this – and reduced administration time, lower messaging costs and streamlined patient communication! It’s every practitioner’s dream!” said Dr Pyefinch.  “Our team is already working on Phase 2 of the App which will include even more ways to connect practices and their patients”.

The Best Health App has all the bases covered in respect of Practice/Patient confidentiality. Security, privacy and storage of patient’s sensitive data is critical and forms the architectural backbone of the Best Health App. On downloading the App, two verified forms of ID are required to enable account creation – an email address and mobile number. Messages are exchanged using two levels of encryption. Additionally, mobile devices have inbuilt security, meaning that anything stored locally is encrypted. Public access to all data has been blocked. Personally Identifiable Information and Clinical Data cannot be decrypted.

“Getting on board with the Best Help App could not be easier or cheaper for your Practice – we will send you a Welcome Pack with everything you need to activate the App and promote the benefits to your patients including, brochure stand, brochures, posters and instruction sheets” said Dr Pyefinch. “Everything referenced here in relation to the App can be set up with one initial low-cost fee”.

If Practices do not currently use Bp Premier but are excited by the opportunities offered by the Best Health App, they can contact sales@bpsofware.net. Further details can be obtained online as well at https://bpsoftware.net/best-health-app-overview/.

 

Photo: Some of the Best Practice team who have developed and worked on the Best Health App

BACK ROW L to R – Niraj Bhatt, Dr Frank Pyefinch, Meg Gugenberger, Landon Reilly

FRONT ROW L to R – Honey Sivan Kutty, Lorraine Pyefinch, Toseef Ajmeri, Vinay Kumar

Best Practice to run free Masterclasses on Best Health App and Bp Comms

In October, Best Practice will be launching the Best Health App, a patient app that all patients of Practices using Bp Premier can download for free.

When the Best Health App is released, Bp Premier users will have two ways to communicate with their patients via their mobile phones, under the “umbrella” brand of Bp Comms.

Best Practice will be running a series of free Masterclasses covering Patient Communication using Bp Comms; and Navigating Best Health – an introduction to Bp’s new Patient App:

Tuesday 8th of October:

10.00am: Patient Communication using Bp Comms

2.00pm: Navigating Best Health, an introduction to Bp’s new Patient App

 

Thursday 10th of October:

10.00am: Patient Communication using Bp Comms

2.00pm: Navigating Best Health, an introduction to Bp’s new Patient App

 

Tuesday 15th of October:

10.00am: Patient Communication using Bp Comms

2.00pm: Navigating Best Health, an introduction to Bp’s new Patient App

 

Thursday 17th of October:

10.00am: Patient Communication using Bp Comms

2.00pm: Navigating Best Health, an introduction to Bp’s new Patient App

 NB: Session times are being run at AEST times (not AESDT daylight savings times)

 

Registration is free for the Bp Masterclasses and can be made here. Details on prerequisites are also detailed on the registration site. For more details phone Best Practice Software’s Learning team on 1300 40 1111.